Saturday, November 24, 2012

Aston Villa 0 - Arsenal 0

This was a hard fought battle, which the weather won. It looked a perfectly miserable day to be out on the pitch with the rain pelting down hard throughout the entire 90 minutes. Villa defended high and strong, giving Arsenal players little time on the ball. Both sides struggled to create scoring chances; yet either side might have won the game - Villa on a tremendous shot from outside the box by Holman, which Szczesny managed to paw against the crossbar and out; and Arsenal on a cross to the inside post by Oxlade-Chamberlain, which Ramsey couldn't manage to direct onto the goal.

All in all, both sides probably deserved a point, which is a bit disappointing for Arsenal fans, given the two preceding performances during the past week. However, the effort and belief were clearly there, and that is all we can really ask for. In particular, Giroud deserves special credit for his play today. He seemed to be everywhere on the pitch; he held up the ball well with his back to goal; distributed with assurance and even finesse, and helped back on defense. He clearly has grown into his role on the squad.

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